Friday, March 09, 2012
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AAA Window, Siding and Roofing plans move to a new location

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[March 09, 2012]  Within the next few weeks, a downtown business is going to have a new home. AAA Window, Siding and Roofing will be moving from their location at 125 S. Kickapoo on the downtown square. They will make their new home at the corner of South Logan and Clinton streets.

The owner of AAA, Larry Adams, has been in business over 30 years in the Lincoln area. When he and his brothers started the company, he was the owner and his brothers were employees of the business.

Adams recently purchased the 12,000-square-foot building at the corner of Logan and Clinton and intends to make it the home of AAA for many years to come.

The building is divided into two sections. The south side, which has a corner entry, will be the business display and sales offices. The north end will be the warehouse for inventory.

General manager Tom Slicko explained that AAA has occupied the warehouse space for quite some time, paying rent to the previous owner.

The new location is going to be not only a showroom, but also a showplace. The first area a person sees when entering through the corner door will be the official showroom of the business. There will also be offices for sales staff and a large conference room.

Slicko explained that the conference room will be done with tray ceilings and chandeliers and French doors opening into the room.

Past the showroom and down the length of a hall, there will be a large coffee and lunchroom area for the staff, staff bathrooms, and a "lead generation room."

Slicko explained that the lead generation room will be for the staff that makes cold calls within the service area, surveying potential customers and hopefully setting up appointments for sales staff to make on-site visits.

Farther down the hall, a space that at the moment is wide open will be turned into executive offices and offices for the accounting department. Beyond that area is another large space Adams said he isn't sure what he's going to do with.

Slicko commented that the storefront building on the square was really not big enough for all the displays they needed as well as staff. The new location, though in rough shape at the moment, will be a much larger space that will allow the company to continue to grow as it has in the past few years.

AAA Window Siding and Roofing covers a 90-mile radius that includes Decatur, Peoria and Springfield. The company hires outside salesmen who live in the communities they serve.

Slicko said altogether there are about 90 employees of the company, including the sales staff, Lincoln office and showroom staff, and installation crews.

Slicko said AAA is a unique business in that they do not go out for working on new construction homes. Rather they work almost exclusively with remodels, and they specialize in custom-built windows.

All the windows they sell are sold as AAA brand and made to order.

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Slicko said this is an important service in communities such as Lincoln where the popular trend is to try to care for and keep up a much older home.

"There are times when each window in an older home may be a quarter-inch off from all the others. We measure each one and build each window to fit the house," he said.

What the company offers to those who love their older homes with the larger, longer windows is a product whereby they don't have to compromise the aesthetic of the home in order to have new, energy-efficient windows.

Although the thought of a custom product often implies "more costly," that may not actually be the case, Slicko said. When a contractor is making the house fit the window, there is more labor involved, and in some of the older homes where there might be rich wood trims, some of that is going to be lost.

"The windows may be more expensive, but the labor is going to be less," he said. "So it can really end up being a wash."

Plus, some of the original character of the home is saved when new modern wood trims don't have to go into a vintage home.

In addition to windows, the company also deals with siding, roofing and energy-efficient insulation products.

Adams and Slicko agree business has been good for the company.

"Even since 2008 when the housing business kind of fell, we've managed to grow," Slicko said.

A part of the success of the company is the attitude of the company, he said.

"We do things the right way. That may be the best way to say it. Like, we're putting this building together, we're doing it the right way and that is the same thing we do with everybody's homes: We do it the right way."

A grand opening at the new location is being planned for later in the summer.



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